Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Foundation
Our Story Why We Exist
Created in 1995... During a ten year period from 1984-1994, private citizens - Calgarians who were grateful for the professional and caring medical service they received from Calgary EMS personnel - made donations to The City of Calgary. This source of revenue prompted the City of Calgary EMS to consider the expanded role they could play in the community by way of becoming a proactive provider of services that would ensure continued responsive service and sustainable pre-hospital care even as call volumes continued to grow.
Realizing that many of the viable public education and support initiatives that could be supported by these donated funds fall outside of the mandate and the scope of publicly funded emergency medical services, caring and committed EMS personnel created The Calgary Emergency Medical Services Foundation in 1995.
The Foundation from its inception to now, is a registered charity and operates independently from publicly funded emergency medical services (initally The City of Calgary and currently Alberta Health Services). Known now as the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Foundation, the mandate is to support front-line paramedics through research, education, and injury and mental health iniatitives.
The EMS Foundation is committed to actions that ensure long term stability and growth. This includes development and execution of a community-based fund development plan along with development and election of a community-centred board of directors.
Our Impact What We Do
The EMS Foundation is one of a few charitable emergency medical services organizations in Canada fundraising to provide programs and services to continually advance the level of pre-hospital care. This effort has resulted in innovative city-wide programs that have impacted all ages and levels of heathcare provided. Success has been achieved by reaching out beyond urgent medical care to create services which educate all populations while taking a preventative approach to health.
- Just as hospitals raise funds for advanced equipment and procedures, the EMS Foundation raises funds as well, to provide advanced training to paramedics and ensure ambulances are equipped with state of the art equipment - to improve patient care.
When you require emergency medical service - paramedics want leading edge technology in the ambulance to save your life. They look to the EMS Foundation to provide funding for training and equipment. This pursuit of excellence positions Calgary's Emergency Medical Services as an industry leader with a proven track record...
- First advanced life support paramedic service in Canada
- First centre in Canada to trial paramedics on Motorcycles
- First centre in Canada to trial paramedics on Urban Bikes (Rapid Access Paramedics)
- First centre in Canada to develop a Hazardous Materials paramedic program
- First communications centre in Canada to be awarded a Medical Priority Dispatch Centre of Excellence
Emergency Medical Services in Calgary was one of the first to have:
- Paramedic response units (PRU's)
- A tactical paramedic program (TEMS)
- Public order paramedic program (POU)
Bottom-line, Caring for You!
Our Programs How We Do It
Capsule of Life® (COL): COL allows emergency services personnel to find your medical information in a timely manner when you may not be able to provide it yourself. COL kits contain your basic medical information placed inside a capsule that is stored in your fridge - a very identifiable and accessible location in your home. This program educates the public regarding the importance of having their medical information readily at hand.
Project Smile: An ambulance ride can be extremely frightening for a child, especially when they are already sick or hurt. Project Smile provides sick or injured children aboard an ambulance their very own “Medic Moose.” Receiving this toy has proven effective in decreasing the child’s fears and anxieties allowing paramedics to provide the best care. Thousands of Medic Moose plush toys have been given to pediatric patients aboard ambulances.
Young Heroes Program: Young people between the ages of 4 and 13 are recognized annually for calling 9-1-1 appropriately in an emergency situation. This program recognizes young people who've made a difference in an emergency situation. Their actions set an excellent example for others to learn about the proper use of 9-1-1. Since 2008, over 50 young people have been honoured.
CHOICES in an injury prevention program targeting junior and senior high school students. Students learn and discuss injury prevention in an interactive presentation led by a highly experienced paramedic and clinical educator. This presentation focuses on the three largest causes of injuries in youth: 1) motor vehicle collisions, 2) sports and recreation incidents, and 3) falls. CHOICES hits home with students by demonstrating that the results others suffer do not have to happen and that injury can be preventable.
Bursaries: In partnership with the Cumming School of Medicine, two Paramedics receive bursaries to attend graduate studies to advance the field of pre-hospital care through research in the SEEDS program (EMS Research Education Development Studentships). This program will develop the vital area of EMS research (a topic largely under-researched), provide education and mentorship opportunities in research to EMS providers, and strengthen research partnerships between the EMS Foundation, the University of Calgary, and the Alberta EMS system.
Equipment Purchase: The Foundation raises funds to acquire additional equipment for EMS practitioners. To date the Foundation’s fundraising efforts include the purchase of a Power-load Bariatric Stretcher System and Non-emergency Patient Transfer vehicles.
Our Requests What You Can Do
EMS Foundation is a registered charity, separate from Calgary Emergency Medical Services. Funds raised by EMS Foundation through the generosity of our donors do not replace Calgary Emergency Medical Services’s core funding, but rather enhance safety and illness prevention and advance paramedical research, practice and training. Specifically, funds raised through EMS Foundation support education, injury prevention, research and equipment.
Considering supporting EMS Foundation today! There are many ways to make a tax receipted general donation to EMS Foundation:
- Monthly Giving - As little as $10 per month can help support EMS Foundation! Choosing the Monthly Giving Program not only helps you to budget by spreading out your charitable donation but also helps us in forecasting our cash flow so we can determine in advance the work we can support. To join our Monthly Giving Program, visit www.canadahelps.org.
- Donor Recognition - EMS Foundation is grateful to all our donors for their generous contributions. With every donation, we are able to provide more safety and illness prevention programs as well as advances in paramedical research, practice and training.
- Endowment Funds - Many donors, especially those making legacy gifts, want their gift to be preserved and used long after their passing, thereby creating a lasting testimony and to assure support for their area of interest. This is often achieved through the establishment of an endowment fund. Endowment funds are important to EMS Foundation as they provide long-term financial funding to ensure the continuation of our work.
- Other ways to help - You can also help us by volunteering or by hosting an event on behalf of EMS Foundation. Sometimes an extra set of hands can make all the difference. Please contact us if you are interested in volunteer opportunities with EMS Foundation.
- Planned Giving - A planned gift allows you to contribute to EMS Foundation without affecting current financial circumstances, and often involves the use of financial or legal instruments such as wills, life insurance policies, endowments and trusts. Donors who choose to leave a gift to EMS Foundation can be assured it will be a legacy; planned gifts will be secured in an endowment fund.
- Memorial and Tribute Gifts - You may wish to honour the memory of a friend or relative by making a memorial donation in their name. EMS Foundation will notify the family that you have made a gift, but will not specify the amount. Please see the Memorial Donation Form for more information. Gifts can also be made in recognition of a special occasion such as a graduation, birthday or marriage. EMS Foundation will forward congratulations to the honoree to let them know you thought of them in this special way.
- Gifts in Kind - A gift-in-kind receipt can be issued for any tangible gift to EMS Foundation. For example, if you donated a specific item for an EMS Foundation auction, you would attach an invoice showing its value and you would receive a tax receipt for that amount. Gift-in-kind receipts cannot be issued for services. Please contact EMS Foundation for more information about donations of services.
- Host an Event - Do you have an idea to help raise money for EMS Foundation? EMS Foundation relies on third party fundraisers to help us achieve our mission. If you have an idea for an event or would like to host an event for EMS Foundation, please contact us and we will be happy to work with you, provide resources for your event, and offer guidance and support as required.